As we began to slowly make our way down the corridor, with the sounds of footsteps above us, there was a sharp sound from the solarium at the end of the hall. I won’t say this was getting monotonous—clearly not a word to be used while standing in a dark asylum at midnight!—but it wasn’t anything we hadn’t heard before.
I still wasn’t experiencing any anxiety at this point, but Marge was obviously feeling otherwise. She suddenly announced that this wing was too uncomfortable for her and she left, saying she would wait for us in the café. Just after she left there were more noises from the solarium, and Mike, Scott and I continued on toward the sounds.
Soon after we began to move again, there was a perceptible shift in the atmosphere. Nothing strong, but definitely noticeable, and of the nature of which I can best describe as being "confrontational." In fact, at that moment I said, "I feel like we are walking into a gunfight." There were the three of us, equipment in hand, walking in line down the long hallway toward sounds we could not explain, about to face what, we didn’t know. It was like some bizarre paranormal western, and little did I realize that the bad guys were planning an ambush…
A bit further down the hall Mike asked if anyone wanted to make their presence known. Again it sounded like several people were walking just over our heads. Then a sound came from about forty feet ahead of us. Then there were banging and tapping sounds behind us which caused us to stop and listen quietly, and Mike commented that there were "sounds all around us."
Next a tapping sound could be heard in a room near where Mike was standing, and he felt compelled to go inside. A few moments later he came out and exclaimed, "Oh, Jesus!"
"Not good?" I asked, knowing full well that whatever he had just experienced in that room would have sent most people running and screaming.
"Covered in goose bumps," he replied, then took a moment before he explained what had happened.
As soon as he entered the room, there was a banging sound directly above him and noises all along the wall next to him, not to mention a horrible, overwhelming feeling. We checked for a number over the doorway and I half expected that it would be room #29, where Lori had experienced the pain of a woman who had died of TB. I was half right—while it wasn’t the doorway that read #29, it was a doorway at the other end of the large double room. So it was in fact, that same room where something very bad happens to sensitive people.
We finally made it to the solarium and sure enough, the sounds emanating from that room ceased as soon as we crossed the threshold. In a way, I was relieved that there wasn’t a powerful confrontation, but on the other hand I was there for direct evidence of a haunting, not a cat and mouse game of follow the bouncing sounds. We stood in the silent darkness for a while, then Mike shouted, "If anyone is hear, respond by making a noise."
On cue, another heavy banging sound echoed down the hallway we had just come down.
"That was a noise," I stated with some satisfaction.
"That was definitely a noise," Mike said, similarly pleased by the instant response.
We waited a while longer in the solarium to see if anything else might happen there, but persistent sounds back down the hallway made it clear that the scene of the action had shifted once again. As I left the solarium, I again noted that I was perfectly calm, and except for Marge’s departure, the investigation had progressed in an orderly and scientific fashion. Let me tell you, enjoy that feeling while you can on a ghost hunt, because everything can change in one terrifying heartbeat!
As we made our way back down the hall, the noises began again behind us, and continued in front of us, as well. In the darkness, I hadn’t realized that I had gotten about ten or twelve feet ahead of Mike and Scott, and all of a sudden as I approached a doorway to my left, an awful, threatening presence rushed out. I couldn’t see it, I couldn’t hear it, but I felt it as surely as if someone had run into me.
I have been in prisons, cemeteries, murder and suicide scenes and have experienced all manner of negative entities, but rarely have I felt personally endangered. At that shocking moment, not only did I feel threatened, but it was a tangible feeling that this entity hated women, and was threatening me on a profoundly personal level. I had never experienced that sensation before—at least not from the dead—and I felt the overwhelming need to move between Mike and Scott. This all happened in a split second, and I felt that I would be safer if I could get in the middle of the two men.
Get in the middle, must get in the middle
, I thought to myself.
I quickly moved between Mike and Scott, and actually felt shielded by their male energy. Believe me, as I write this now, I know it sounds crazy, but at that moment it was like a survival instinct kicked in. I have never been one who felt the need to seek protection from men, but I’m not too proud to say that under the circumstances I did what I felt I had to do. I didn’t have time to explain what was going on, and I had only started to say that I was feeling uncomfortable when Mike spoke.
"Did you ever play that game with a baseball where you’re in the middle and you’re trying to run to each base?" he asked as my jaw dropped when he said "middle."
"Monkey in Middle," Scott said.
"That’s how I feel right now," Mike continued.
What’s that expression, that you could knock me over with a feather? Despite the fear of the moment, I was astonished.
"Well, look at what I just did," I said, gesturing with my arms to indicate how I had moved into the middle of the two of them. "I stood right between you two because I didn’t feel safe."
"They’ve got us between them," Mike stated calmly as if observing a chess match.
"I can’t believe you said that!" I said with considerably less calm. Despite feeling somewhat protected in the middle of the two men, the threatening presence—or was it two?—was still right there with us, within arm’s length. As I took a breath and tried to relax, it felt like more than one negative entity wanted a piece of me. That was it, and evidence or not, I had enough.
"I’m getting the hell out of here," I said as I hurried to the heavy double doors at the end of the hallway. Fortunately, as soon as I passed through the doors, the terrible sensation stopped.
They can’t reach me out here
, I thought, greatly relieved.
Mike and Scott soon exited, and Mike explained how he felt that whoever was in there had maneuvered us to that particular location.
"They moved us there with the noises," he concluded, as I thought back to how we kept moving in response to the sounds around us.
"Okay, that’s a keeper!" I declared, regaining more of my controlled ghost investigator demeanor. But I couldn’t help adding, "But I didn’t like that!"
We made our way back to the café where Marge was relaxing. I told her she had made the smart move by leaving that wing right away. I wanted to ask Lori about that area, but I didn’t want to immediately say what I had experienced. Never pose a question like, "Did you see that blue elephant in the back right corner of the green room?" Instead, simply ask, "Have there been any unusual sightings in the green room, and if so, in what part of the room?" It’s not that I don’t think witnesses are honest, but I would prefer to remove the possibility of the power of suggestion.
When I found Lori, I only said I had an interesting experience in that particular wing, and asked what others had reported there. The first words out of her mouth were startling, but not totally unexpected.
"The angry spirits of two men who hate women are in that wing, and a lot of women have felt threatened by them."
Good thing there weren’t any feathers around, because you could have knocked me over once again. I then told her what had happened to me, and she related details of similar incidents reported by other women. As unpleasant as it had been, this was exactly the reason I spend long hours in creepy places, looking for evidence such as this. I checked the audio of our tour when we first arrived, and no one had mentioned the two threatening male entities. There was no way I could have known about them beforehand. Marge felt them, then I felt them, and Lori confirmed that we certainly weren’t the first, and most likely won’t be the last.